Once I was a clever boy learning the arts of Oxford... is a quotation from the verses written by Bishop Richard Fleming (c.1385-1431) for his tomb in Lincoln Cathedral. Fleming, the founder of Lincoln College in Oxford, is the subject of my research for a D. Phil., and, like me, a son of the West Riding. I have remarked in the past that I have a deeply meaningful on-going relationship with a dead fifteenth century bishop... it was Fleming who, in effect, enabled me to come to Oxford and to learn its arts, and for that I am immensely grateful.

Monday, 28 April 2014

Devotion to St George

Today is the liturgical commemoration of St George this year - but on that point do look at Fr Hunwicke's post S George??. To mark the feast of the national patron saint here are some late medieval English depictions of him. This was the period in which his cult was widespread and images of him must have been plentiful. However time and chance as well as religious and political upheavels have robbed us of most of them. Those which do survive are often damaged.

File:Saint George and the Dragon alabaster sculpture.jpg 

St George and the Dragon
English polychromed alabaster, 1375-1420
National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C.


Altar with St George and the Dragon, presented to Queen Margaret of Anjou, wife of King Henry VI by the first Earl of Shrewsbury, and made in Rouen in 1445. Kneeling at the altar are the Knights of the Garter

This looks similar as acomposition to the statue above,and to such spectaular surviving pieces as the statue of St George which survives in Stockholm, and about which I have posted beforehand in
Image: wars of theroses.devhub.com

Medieval glass from St Winnow, Cornwall

Haddon Hall in Derbyshire has this figure, notable for his ginger moustache

Images: aclerkofoxford.blogspot.  


This fine mid-fifteenth century figure of St George, in St Martin Coney Street in York.
Originally in the clerestory of the church the figure survived the bombing of 1942 and has been re-set in a window in the restored south aisle

Image;Steve Day on Flickr 


The figure in its original situation before 1942
Left to right: St Christopher, St Gabriel, the Virgin Mary and St George, with donors below.

Image: jmc4 - Church Explorer on Flickr

If stained glass has been vulnerable to iconoclastic reformers and revolutionaries, not to mention bombs and neglect, so too have been wall paintings. In addition to the one I featured in Medieval Wall paintings uncovered in Wales, here is one of the best surviving examples from England:

 St. George, wall-painting in St. Gregory's Church, Norwich, c.1500


St George and the dragon (watercolour detail)

St George and the Dragon

This detail is from a watercolour painting by the Great Yarmouth artist Cornelius Jansson Walter Winter (1821-1891), drawn from the wall-painting discovered in St Gregory's Norwich in 1861.
The wall-painting is thought to be one of the finest and most complete medieval depictions of St George to be found in England, and this painting gives an idea of what its original appearance may have been.

Image: BBC - Picture courtesy of the Norwich Castle Museum And Art Gallery

St George pray for us

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